Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

June 10, 2005 13:16 ET

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation: Get a Job, Buy a House

VICTORIA, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(CCNMatthews - June 10, 2005) - Improving labour market conditions are a driving force behind the high levels of housing resale activity and new home construction in British Columbia, according to Carol Frketich, Regional Economist with the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC).

Statistics Canada reported today that employment in British Columbia increased by 17,700 people in May from April. This means 83,700 more people were working compared to May 2004. As well, the province's unemployment rate dropped to 5.7 per cent in May, the second lowest on record, and well below the national average of 6.8 per cent.

"The sizzling job market will drive new home construction higher in 2005," noted Frketich. Higher levels of full-time employment, growth in incomes and boost to consumer confidence bode well for housing demand. There is also the effect on population flows. "While Alberta has a lower unemployment rate than British Columbia, British Columbia has a better job creation record so far in 2005 and one factor that gets people moving is jobs," added Frketich. In 2004, British Columbia recorded a net gain of 7,080 people from other provinces and that figure is projected to be even higher in 2005. More people moving to the province will generate increased demand for housing.

CMHC expects new home construction to total 33,600 housing starts in 2005, a 2.1 per cent increase from last year. Resale activity is projected to moderate slightly from last year's record level, while average resale prices are forecast to increase 6.5 per cent.

CMHC is Canada's national housing agency. The BC Regional Business Centre produces a variety of reports which highlight trends in the new and resale housing markets.

To view the attached graph please click on the following link:

Contact Information

  • Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation
    Carol Frketich
    Regional Economist BCY, CMHC
    (250) 363-8042 or Cellular: (604) 787-5598